The story just keeps getting better for Jonathan Vaughters, boss of Garmin-Cervelo team. JV, as he is known, has been the face of pro-peloton through his role as the president of AIGCP (group of professional cycling teams). He has championed the cause of riders’ safety and has recently forced UCI to reconsider their half-cooked decision of banning team radios from professional races. He has been equally vocal against doping and his team Garmin-Cervelo practices a strict ‘no-needle’ policy which shows JV puts his money where his mouth is, a rare trait in the cycling world.
The latest shining example of JV’s phenomenal drive to revive professional cycling is the win secured by Thomas Dekker along with Johan Vansummeren at Duo Normand. Dekker was banned in 2008 for using EPO, a charge which he accepted. He is now helping WADA in their fight against doping in cycling. Some time in the middle of this season, there was news that Dekker is planning to make a come back under Chipotle Development Team, continental squad run by Vaughters. Dekker has told that JV has provided his full support to help him make a comeback and to show that he could win races on bread and water. Although the comeback has not been ideal for the Dutchman but his latest win has vindicated Vaughters’ trust in his abilities. There is still some way to go before Dekker makes a full comeback to the peloton but the early signs are encouraging. I hope he is able to prove himself and join one of Vaughters’ team in 2012. If that happens, cycling will take a step forward in David Millar, JV and every other passionate fan’s vision of clean racing.